P is for Pastels: A-to-Z-Challenge

I’ve never liked pastels, and for some reason, when people used to give me art supplies, they always gave me pastels. Because I was a glitzy Southern Californian beach gurl, they gave me shimmery pastels!

I find them clumsy, thick, and I have trouble getting detail.  I’m not Monet, so not into suggesting with dots of color, or blends of color.

2014 3 30 sennelier 2I have this amazing box of Sennelier iridescent (not really me either) pastels, and I have NEVER USED THEM.  Then I came across someone saying they water-colored across their pastel.  Hmmm.  Online, I checked out things-one-can-do with pastels, and found I could do exactly that.

I wish I could tell you that playing around (below) changed my mind.  I am still not in love with them, BUT, I will keep one box as I am gifting supplies (I have two) I will never use, and maybe someday will play with them again.

Below, I started with crude fast colors on a sheet in a doodle I often do of the RV we hope to own.  I used my water brush to blend.  Not a great work of art, but a good test, and I think it is good to show your simply awful work, because so many artists hide their experiments.

Sennelier pastels don’t layer well.  I tried adding orange on top of the yellow sun, and it was a streaky mess.  Also, the Sennelier doesn’t like to be mixed with other watercolor crayon bits, like Neocolor II — or the Neocolor doesn’t like the Sennelier.  And it was not compatible with the Stabilo silver watercolor pencil I tried.  Some of the streaky bits were me playing with a mixed bag.

Sometime I will try again . . .  as I said, if I can use them like Neocolor II, possibly I will find a time and place when they are perfect for what I am imagining!

2014 3 30 sennelier 3


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About dkatiepowellart

hollywood baby turned beach gurl turned steel&glass city gurl turned cowgurl turned herb gurl turned green city gurl. . . artist writer photographer. . . cat lover but misses our big dogs, gone to heaven. . . buddhist and interested in the study of spiritual traditions. . . foodie, organic, lover of all things mik, partner in conservation business mpfconservation, consummate blogger, making a dream happen, insomniac who is either reading buddhist teachings or not-so-bloody mysteries or autobio journal thangs early in the morning when i can't sleep
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9 Responses to P is for Pastels: A-to-Z-Challenge

  1. I don’t like pastels either. Probably because I don’t know how to use them! I’m never sure if I’m supposed to blend them and they are so messy. Lol! One of these days I should give them another chance.


  2. Tina Downey says:

    I’m not an artist at all, but it seems to me that pastels would be very unforgiving. I do enjoy going to Whimsy Paint and Sip. I don’t know if they have franchises, but the basic idea is you sign up for a class (only about $45 for three hours) where everyone will paint (acrylic paint blobs that you thin out with water, brushes in three sizes) the same painting. A teacher guides you step by step. Meanwhile, they have a bar, and you can sip the beverage of your choice (chardonnay please) while working. There’s a lot of, “Ok, work on that step and I’ll wander around and see how you are doing” when they blast rock music. It’s just a ton of fun to go with a couple of friends for an evening. I have two paintings, and though they aren’t worthy of going on my walls, it’s fun to see how much I improved from one to the other. My sister goes a LOT (bigger budget and she lives 10 minutes away as opposed to my 40) and is getting quite good.
    My artistic side comes out in knitting and writing and creative wrapping of gifts.
    Tina @ Life is Good
    A to Z Team @ Blogging From A to Z April Challenge 2014


  3. susanissima says:

    I like the texture of the watercolor paper and the pastels doing their dance together…reminds me of good old Crayolas that we used with tempera for resist art when I was a wee lass. Nicely nostalgic. By the way, cute RV, and looks like surf’s up!


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